2014年09月02日

'Matsue Castle', designated as an important cultural asset, is one of the largest and oldest castles among the existing castles in Japan.

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In the last days of the Edo period, at the beginning of the 19th century, the number of castles with a full-scale donjon what is called 'tenshukaku' was about 70 across Japan. Unfortunately, many of them were intentionally destroyed when Japan's modernization was ongoing, and were reduced to ashes during the second World War. Only 12 original tenshukakus have survived this tragic drama.
Matsue Castle in the picture, which is one of thhe survivors, boasts the great tenshukaku with the second largest total floor area as well as the third tallest height of 30 meters. The construction work of this castle was started in 1611 to be completed in 1616. This tenshukaku was designed to be used as a fortress in case of emergency, with little decoration, since the days of the construction work were not enough pacified. The observatory on the top to watch the enemy has no walls to get a 360-degree view.

Licensed tour guide/travel assistant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 14:45 | Chugoku | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2014年08月27日

'Izumo-Hinomisaki' lighthouse in Shimane Prefecture is the tallest and one of the oldest lighthouses in Japan.

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This old lighthouse with a height of 43 meters, 63 meters above sea level, has long been working since 1903. The special lens on the top, with a length of 2.5 meters, is one of the largest lenses in Japan, accordingly this light reaches 40 kilimeters off the coast. There are only five lighthouses equipped with the same size lens in Japan. This building is earthquake-proof thanks to a unique structure, stone walls outside, brick walls inside and a narrow space in between. The inside is opened to the public, however, it is not recommended to elderly people annd children as the stairs are too steep for them.
This lighthouse is placed on the 'The IALA list of 100 lighthouses as historic and archetectural monument'.

Licensed tour guide/travel assistant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 10:42 | Chugoku | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2014年08月26日

'Adachi Art Museum' in Yasugi City, Shimane Prefecture, is known for many Japanese paintings of 'Yokoyama Taikan', and a full-scale Japanese garden.

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Adachi Art Museum was established by 'Adachi Zenko', a great local businessman, in 1970. He was known as an enthusiastic collector of Japanese arts, with the leading collection of Yokoyama Taikan's Japanese paintings.
Another feature of this museum is an extensive Japanese garden, as he collected the materials of this garden, such as rocks and pine trees, on his own across Japan.
Based on his motto 'Gardens are paintings too', the various aspects of this garden can be enjoyed, as if they were real paintings, through the many windows of this museum.
This garden had gotten the first place in a specialist magazine in the U.S. for ten consecutive years, as well as the three-star rating in the Michelin Green Guide.

Licensed tour guide/travel assistant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 14:15 | Chugoku | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする